Department of Administration
Department of Administration
Department of Administration

Change Order Approved for Dome Project to Create New Support System


Work on the Capitol dome continues following the recent approval of a change order to provide new support for the dome below the structure. This change comes after engineers discovered additional damage to clay tiles directly beneath the dome investigated as part of the dome moisture intrusion project. The tiles were originally installed to serve as interior partitions to support the finished plaster and were not intended to support the dome; the dome instead used a comprehensive hanger system to suspend the dome in place.   

The work that will be completed as part of the change order will include creating a new support structure beneath the dome to provide continuous support, along with rebuilding the damaged walls in the central rotunda beneath the dome. The new support structure is necessary to fully support the dome and to prevent it from moving while the walls are removed and rebuilt beneath the dome.  

“The goal of this current change order is to allow the weight of the dome to rest on material that is reliable, cost-effective, and proven to be long lasting,” said Department of Administration Cabinet Secretary Allan McVey. “As with any building, proper maintenance is key in preserving it, especially with a historic and notable landmark like the West Virginia capitol building and its symbolic dome.”

Due to the age of the structure and the clay tile used in the original construction, the new walls will be built with reinforced and grouted masonry walls, which will be integrated with the existing structure to stabilize the building, providing assurance that the building will remain intact for decades to come.

While the change order comes at a price, the work wasn’t completely unexpected for this type of work. During the design phase for the moisture intrusion project, it was not possible to fully investigate inside the dome walls without the scaffolding that currently exists. The work completed as part of this change order will add approximately 16 weeks to the final completion date of the project at a cost of approximately $765,000.


Samantha Knapp